Rah Cha Cha Ruckus

The Rah Cha Cha Ruckus is an annual off-season FIRST® Robotics Competition event usually held at the Main Street Armory in Rochester, NY.  With a focus on fun and a Halloween theme, the Ruckus is an exciting event for FIRST teams and community spectators alike. Holding the event in a large concert venue for 44 teams, some from Canada and China, we’ve focused on improving it every year. The event is a great opportunity for teams to recruit and test new pit crews and drive teams. There are plenty of ways to watch Ruckus! We broadcast on Twitch, Town of Penfield Television (also available with Apple TV and Roku), and our YouTube channel. 

Due to COVID-19, in 2020 we held Ruckus Reloaded, an online viewing/chat party of 2019’s event reaching viewers in 15 countries.

Photo of announcer on a playing field with robotics at Rochester Ruckus

For Teams…

The Ruckus is geared to meet the needs of teams looking for a fun, relaxed competition environment. Our aim is to provide an exciting off-season event experience while keeping the cost of attendance reasonable and manageable for teams. Teams attending Ruckus can look forward to….

  • A one-day offseason competition generally following the same format and rules as last year’s FIRST competition.
  • One of the lowest-cost entry fees of any off-season event; 2019 rookie teams compete free and can borrow a veteran team’s robot!
  • As a fall-season event, teams can train new drivers and give new team members a chance to see a competition without waiting until March!
  • A large scale venue giving teams full size regional pits and a safe competition environment.
  • A wide-array of unique awards, recognizing both the competition winners and celebrating various other team attributes!
  • Several fun extra events throughout the competition day to add variety to the competition!

Teams should visit the About Ruckus section for essential event details including the event schedulerules modifications, event location details, this year’s charity drive, and more! We hope you will consider registering to attend the competition and join us in October for a day of fun competition!

Photo of volunteers in orange shirts on a game field showing observers in stands

For the Public…

Science and technology enthusiasts, educators, and families alike can find an intriguing and exciting experience at the Ruckus! Come for an hour or two, or be our guest all day! Here’s some key things to look forward to when visiting the event…

  • The event is free and open to the public. No tickets or registration is required!
  • See high school students operating their 120 lb. robots on a large, indoor playing field competing for points in a 3 vs. 3 game!
  • Walk through “the pit” area where you can see the robots up close and meet the students and mentors that created them.
  • Family-friendly environment and competition – ideal for families who have been involved in FIRST Lego League (FLL)!

Our About Ruckus page has information on the FIRST Robotics Competition, including a video introduction to the game you will see the students playing this year. We hope you’ll take a look at the schedule of the day’s events and consider joining us!

Photo of team member in front of Mega Drive sign with collection buckets at Rochester Ruckus

FIRST MEGA Drive…

We have joined forces with FIRST Team 340 to host the FIRST MEGA Drive during Ruckus.

Teams are encouraged to participate in any way they can and help to make a difference in our local communities!  We accept donations in the following drive categories:

  • Food (non-perishable, for local food pantries): To help people in our community who are hungry.
  • Children’s books (new & gently-used): To promote literacy for children through our local, inner-city pediatric offices. Children’s books about STEAM and technology would be an awesome contribution. (No text books or adult novels, please.)
  • Electronics (small!): To promote learning for underserved children to encourage independence, self- esteem, and creativity (cell phones, hand-helds, and ink & toner cartridges).
  • Shoes! Gently worn or used shoes of all types, from bedroom slippers to sports cleats to work boots and everything in between.: This drive benefits the Rochester City X-Cats robotics team, who gives shoes another life or more before ending up in landfill, and provides business opportunities to individuals or families in developing nations who use the shoes to carve out a living for themselves.
  • Cash donations: Disaster relief to benefit FRC teams who have experienced loss due to natural disasters over that past year.

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